Creative photos and essays from the San Juan Islands

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Port entrance

Port entrance

The welcoming maw of the Port of Friday Harbor is made up of two large concrete breakwater structures. I’ve often wondered the logic of the entrance facing the dominant winter winds. Maybe the engineers thought the southwest winds were more common, but I know from experience that this opening funnels the southeast wavelets built up on the inner harbor, often two feet in height, into the marina to rock the boats on the channel between F and G docks. Studying such effects and renting slips out of the bouncy areas is what is called ‘local knowledge’, and can be just as important as knowing where the rocks and sand bars are when cruising.

Photo location: San Juan Island: Looking south at the Port from the UofW Labs property. This 476 acre military preserve was transferred to the University of Washington in 1921 by the federal government, but can be taken back in time of war. During WWII the labs were closed and used under this provision as a Coast Guard training facility.

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